By Gareth Vaughan
One of the big questions in banking remains to what extent will tech giants such as Apple, Google and Facebook muscle in on the financial services sector?
The answer, according to Moven's New York-based Brett King who also writes books on digital banking and hosts a radio show on the same subject, is act as a go between banks and their customers. Clipping the ticket for their trouble.
King told interest.co.nz in a Double Shot interview the biggest threat from the tech giants to banks is in what he calls the last mile.
"Right now banks are used to customers coming to them when they need a solution. But they're getting weaker at owning the customer because right now banks are pretty much still waiting for customers to come to them if they need a bank product or service," said King.
"So organisations like Apple with iTunes, Google, Facebook, these guys own access to customers and understand customer behaviour, their interests and other things more intimately. So it's not going to be long before banks are going to be having to go to the likes of Google and Facebook to get access to customers for customer acquisition."
"And if I was Google, Facebook or Apple that's where I'd be focusing," King added.
"Having said that Apple has been looking at the payments landscape for many years now. Their first patents on this were in 2008, 2009, so they're definitely cooking something up. My view is that they might see themselves as a competitor for a basic bank account. The iTunes account could very easily act as a sort of debit card device."
"But I don't think they want to compete in banking. I don't think any of them want to carry the risk or the complexities of being a bank (and be regulated like a bank). I think their view is they're quite happy to act as a go between between the customer and the bank, and have the bank pay for that access. And I think that's probably the way they'll go," said King.
Moven this week announced a four-year exclusive New Zealand partnership with Westpac. The two say initially this will see Moven’s mobile money management tool integrated into Westpac’s internet banking platform in October, helping Westpac's customers manage their money day-to-day on their smartphones, tablets, or desktop computers.
This story was first published in our email for paying subscribers. See here for more details and how to subscribe.